If there’s one thing that should not be in doubt, it’s that online reviews have a huge impact on your digital business portfolio. In fact, potential clients need to see positive reviews of your business before they buy from you. Statistics show that over 88% of shoppers incorporate reviews into their buying decision.
It’s worth noting that a good online review today is just as good as a good referral. They both show that you’re running the type of business customers want to be associated with. Like referral leads, good reviews allow you to skip a lot of the relationship building and guarantee high closing numbers.
Here are 4 reasons why you need to get positive reviews:
1. It contributes to your local SEO efforts
Although they may not directly affect all organic search rankings, reviews impact specific or local searches. Location-specific searches favor highly rated businesses and will rank them first. Additionally, although other factors will also come into play, the total number of reviews, their length and quality, as well as the variety of review sites where your business features will contribute to where you fall in the pecking order.
2. Ratings feature prominently on Google Map
The Google Map search layout shows ratings and reviews prominently, so users can immediately tell what others think of your business. This is the kind of immediate feedback that encourages buyers to make a snap decision. Additionally, results are also ranked based on their rating performance and reviews.
3. Customers are increasingly trusting strangers over brands
In the absence of word-of-mouth, online reviews are highly trusted by internet users. In fact, statistics show that although reviews from family and friends are generally more trusted than online reviews, more than 50% of shoppers between 18 and 34 years say they trust online reviews more than the opinions of family and friends.
4. User reviews increase conversions
Customers will more likely make a purchase from a site with user reviews, and visitors that interact with reviews and customer questions will spend more than visitors who don’t. Note that this doesn’t only apply for good reviews – even bad ones. A few not-so-good reviews actually help create a more authentic look. Customers may even dismiss reviews as fake if they’re all good.
Helpful tip: Many online review users will search for the name of a product and include the word ‘review’ or ‘rating’ to the search. It is therefore important to include reviews on your site as you will have a better chance of picking up this traffic.
It’s not just important to have good reviews. You also need to deal with bad reviews positively and see it as an opportunity to improve your business, not just for the individual customer, but also for other customers forming opinions about your business based on those reviews.